Food review: Baburchi gets it right… almost!

19Apr11

The first thing that struck me when I entered Baburchi, located in Greenwich village in New York City, was the décor. Unlike other Indian restaurants in the U.S. that emphasize their Indian-ness by hanging saris on the walls and putting up paintings of elephants and peacocks all around, Baburchi has chosen the Indian village theme and sticks to it. The lantern-like lampshades, heavy, metal glasses and cushion covers with mirror-work – all reminded me of restaurants back home.

The meal started with papads (roasted, thin wafers made with ground lentils and spices) and relishes – another point for authenticity as most restaurants in India serve these before the meal. This further raised my expectations from the food. Unfortunately, it failed to meet them.

For appetizers, I ordered papri (a popular, north Indian dish of chickpeas, potatoes and yogurt). The taste was average and not half as tangy as it is supposed to be. The yogurt was a little sour and spoilt the flavor.

For main course, I chose aaloo chana paneer (a variation of the chana masala with cottage cheese). The dish originates in Punjab and is supposed to be quite spicy. The chef, for some odd reason, decided to add a hint of sweet to it which didn’t go well at all. They did the same to the biryani (a rice-based entrée made with vegetables or meat), which is supposed to be so spicy that in India it is always served with yogurt to balance the flavor.

Adding sugar or honey to entrées is common in Gujarat in western India. But the only sweet in north Indian food is in dessert.

The aaloo parantha (whole-wheat bread stuffed with potatoes) was above average and went well with the chana. I would have preferred a little more flavor and spices in the filling.

In all, I was less than impressed with the food at Baburchi. The experience would have been much better if the restaurant added the same authenticity to its food as it has to its ambience.

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One Response to “Food review: Baburchi gets it right… almost!”

  1. Reblogged this on Not Just Naan.


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